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I’m going on a month-long vacation this summer, and I’m afraid I’m going to lose my technique. How can I stay in shape if I’m not taking class? —Clara, WI

A month is a long time to go without taking class—I usually give myself a week or two after a heavy season to rest my body and heal any minor injuries. But one year I took a fabulous month-long trip to Europe and, I admit, never even thought about dancing! Coming back was tough—I was incredibly stiff and my core was mush. But if you remember to stretch and stay active every few days, you’ll have an easier time than I did.

Many hotels and resorts have exercise facilities where you can make use of the elliptical machine, stationary bike and free weights. Or you can take advantage of your surroundings—hiking trips, walks on the beach, bike rides and canoeing are some activities that will keep you moving. Personally, I love to swim, and sometimes I’ll give myself barre in the pool. And Pilates, yoga, Thera-Band exercises and stretches can be done from the comfort of your hotel room. It may be helpful to set aside a special time of the day to exercise, like in the morning before you head out to sightsee.

It’s great that you want to stay in shape while you’re away from home. But sometimes it’s good to give your body a break. Remember to relax and have fun, too—you’re on vacation, after all!

 

Ballet Stars
From left: Douane Gosa, Gianni Goffredo, James Whiteside, Maxfield Haynes and Matthew Poppe in WTF. Yo Poosh, Courtesy Kimberly Giannelli PR.

We've always known that Madonna loves dance. After all, the "Queen of Pop" studied at the Martha Graham School in the 1970s. Nevertheless, we were still surprised (and thrilled) to see that she invited James Whiteside to perform at her 61st birthday party in The Hamptons last weekend.

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Giveaways
Modeled by Daria Ionova. Darian Volkova, Courtesy Elevé Dancewear.
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News
Boston Ballet's Kathleen Breen Combes, María Álvarez and Dawn Atkins. Christopher Duggan, Courtesy Jacob's Pillow.

Wonder what's going on in ballet this week? We've rounded up some highlights.

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Ballet Stars
Alexandra MacDonald (front row, third from left) didn't win a medal at the Genée International Ballet Competition, but says she came home inspired and newly motivated by the people she met there. Photo Courtesy Genée IBC.

Ballet competitions are an exciting part of any dancer's career. Yet while scholarships, prize money, job offers and the prestige that comes with winning a medal are compelling incentives to participate in one, they're not the only benefits. In fact, many dancers who go home empty-handed still look fondly on the experience and go on to become successful professionals.

This week, the 2019 Genée International Ballet Competition kicks off in Toronto. From August 20-29, over 50 dancers, ages 15–19 and trained in the Royal Academy of Dance syllabus, will perform three solos in the hopes of winning a medal and a $10,000 cash prize. Many past medalists have gone on to illustrious careers—but so have those who didn't win anything. We spoke with three Genée alumni now dancing professionally who know what it's like not to place. Read on to find out why they deem their comp experiences a success, and how you can make the most of yours—whether you win or not.

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